Belviq Withdrawn from the US Market Due to Potential Cancer Risk

On February 13, 2020 The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested that the manufacturer of Belviq, Belviq XR (lorcaserin) voluntarily withdraw the weight-loss drug from the U.S. market because a safety clinical trial shows an increased occurrence of cancer with long term use. The drug manufacturer, Eisai has submitted a request to voluntarily withdraw the drug.

Although the risk was small (0.6% increased risk compared to those taking placebo), the FDA felt this warranted removal from the market. There does not appear to be an increased risk of cancer in the initial months of treatment, but the risk is increased with longer duration on Belviq.

You should stop taking Belviq and call the office to schedule an appointment to discuss alternative weight-loss medicines and/or weight management programs.

The FDA is not recommending special screening for patients who have taken Belviq.  As with any individual patient, regardless of prior Belviq treatment, standard screening recommendations for cancer should be implemented.

Author
Scott Isaacs, MD Endocrinologist and Weight Loss Specialist

You Might Also Enjoy...

Tirzepatide vs. Semaglutide (Mounjaro vs. Wegovy)

The approved indication for tirzepatide is diabetes although studies have found that it is a highly effective weight loss medication. My experience has been that insurance companies will only cover tirzepatide for a diabetes diagnosis and not for obesity.

How to Get a Prescription for Mounjaro (a.k.a Tirzepatide)

Tirzepatide (Mounjaro) is a new medication recently approved for the treatment of diabetes. Even though the approved indication is only for diabetes, newly released research has shown that tirzepatide is the most effective weight loss medication ever.

Medications for Weight loss

Before you decide on any weight-loss medication, it is important to work with your health care provider to decide which option is best for you. Prescription weight loss medications, also known as anti-obesity medications or AOMs work by helping you consume

Top Strategies to Make the Holidays Healthier

What foods will you ADD to your shopping list and your menu? Make sure you have plenty of condiments, add-ins, extra HMR foods and fruits and vegetables on hand. Prep and plan as much as you can in advance, so you have meals and snacks ready.

Fatty Liver and Your Heart

Worldwide rates of obesity have reached pandemic levels. Excess body fat, especially belly fat or visceral adipose tissue increases the changes for fatty liver disease also known as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD.